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tv   Larry King Live  CNN  February 28, 2010 12:00am-1:00am EST

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"southland" and the new episodes run on march 2nd. so the feedback quickly. don lemon said ginormous and i love it and i realize that we have a international audience who may not get that, and i get that. and how come no mention of the marie osmond's son? you are watching the wrong network, because i have done it several times tonight. and sorry about the breaking news, we promise to have more for you. i'm don lemon from the cnn headquarters. we will see you back here tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. eastern. we will have more breaking coverage of the earthquake in chile. the death toll rises in the aftermath of chile's massive earthquake and the number of missing is still unknown. the nation's infrastructure has suffered widespread damage adding challenges to the rescue and relief efforts.
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meanwhile across the pacific, japan waits to see if a quake-triggered tsunami quake-triggered tsunami materializes on its shores. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com hello and thank you for joining us. this is world report, i'm natalie allen. this hour, the tsunami spanned by the earthquake in chile is to reach japan. hundreds of thousands have been evacuated in anticipation of the wave. we are waiting to see what will happen there. meanwhile, chile's international emergency agency says that more than 300 people were killed in the magnitude 8.8 quake. chile's president estimates half a million homes are damaged, and many more buildings, bridges, roads are in ruin. hours before hitting japan, the tsunami arrived in hawaii with a whimper, doing no damage, we are happy to report about that. japanese officials have been warning that the earthquake could generate a major tsunami
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along japan's eastern coast, and kyung lah is joining us from tokyo. how is it looking so far? >> well, natalie, we are waiting to see what the impact is here in japan. it was predicted to happen at the bottom of the last hour, but we are waiting to see what is actually going to happen. japan's meteorological agency has issued the first major tsunami warning for the country. in the past 15 years, we haven't seen anything like this, so that has a lot of people here concerned. they are expecting in some parts of japan, the northern part of the main island waves as high as three meters. so japan's government has issued a number of evacuations all along the coast, all of japan's coastline expected to be impacted in some way, although, again, the most severe waves are expected in the northern part of japan's main island, so still waiting to see what is happening, natalie. pat of the reason that there is so much concern is that in 1960, when we saw that chilean
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earthquake back then, there were huge waves here and 140 people were either killed or never found again after the tsunami struck japan. so a little bit of historical deja vu here, but they are hoping to see what hawaii did and miss the bullet on this one this. >> especially since japan saw an earthquake a couple of days ago, the islands in japan, and they are probably wanting a break at this point. also, they haveplenty of time to prepare and have the evacuations gone smoothly? >> from what we have seen, evacuations have gone well. this is a country very used to earthquakes and very used to tsunamis and they have an extentive emergency preparedness system in place, and so everything has gone smoothly so far, but agains we have to see what the impact is going to be, because there is a number of people who do live in the areas that are likely to be impacted. >> and do officials there, can they pinpoint a time when they think they can say, okay, we are
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in the all clear, and how much longer that might take? >> it is very difficult to either predict and then clear an exact area. the way that tsunamis work at least the way we have seen them here, they are like waves, a first wave and second wave and third we third wave. it is very, very difficult for the government to predict. the japan meteor logic agency is trying to get people out of the area to make sure no one is injured in all of this. >> and are they worried about a potential tidal effect? >> certainly, they are. that is one of the things that i are looking at. the tidal effect, the primary thing is to get people out to look at the structural damage, and one other thing i do want to point out, the coastline here is very, very rugged. certain parts of this coastline are very difficult to get out of. there is some rail issues, rail service issues and roadway
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issues. so rail service has been cut off. some of the major highways have been stopped to make sure that people don't travel into the areas and then get stuck, natalie. >> we will stay in close contact with you as we learn more about what may or may not happen in japan. kyung lah live for us in tokyo. thank you very much. chilean's president took to the airwaves after the earthquake. michelle bachelet urged her people to be strong facing adversity. >> i have flown over the areas, and had meetings with the local authorities to learn on site and to coordinate the actions necessary to help the affected population, the forces of nature have hurt our country greatly, and we are now having to faced a versity and having to stand again, and we are taking all necessary measures to normalize
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little by little the function of all of the basic services and utilities in the country, but there is a great task ahead of us. i have been in six main regions that have been affected, and we will make available help to the people that have been affected. the ministers have to do a detailed count of the disaster in each one of their areas. we will delay the start of classes until the 8th of march to protect the safety of the children, and to open shelters for people that are requiring them. >> the president bachelet is nearing her term, and the president-elect told reporters he is making disaster relief a priority in his new administration. >> translator: i would like to say to everyone that we will put
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this position of the actual government, all of the collaboration of the future, the future team. i have asked the new director that they have, they have our entire cooperation after march 12th. also, this is a big impact for the infrastructure of the country and big losses in transportation, in roads, in airports, flights, also in infrastructure of housing. i am committing to the complete and total help of our administration with the current administration. >> orlando santos is senior vice president at cnn chile and he spoke by phone with cnn's don lemon about his experience in the quake. >> i got up a little bit before
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it started, and i have lived in california and work and lived in san francisco, and los angeles, and so tremblers and quakes are not a big deal to me. i thought, oh, it is a quake. i blew it off a little bit and then it got worse. i looked out over the skyline from my apartment and i could see santiago and then santiago went dark, and i'm on the floor, and the lamp is coming down and the books off of the wall. i tried to get up once but i fell down again. i wound up crawling into the bathroom to the bathtub and i started to count 1001, 1002 -- and i got to 20 seconds inside of the tub and i know it took me at least that long to get there. >> that is rolando santos talking to us from chile. the state of hawaii got lucky and the waves appeared to have caused no serious damage or injuries. residents had a six-hour warning before the tsunami hit and were able to move to save ground.
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gauges show that the surge was less than one meter high. we have the latest from the weather center across the pacific. certainly folks on vacation in hawaii are relieved and the residents as well. >> indeed. no question about it. and again, we will just have this serve as a drill, if you will, across the hawaiian islands and better to be safe than sorry. this could have materialized into a significant event in hawaii, but even if that happened with the advanced warning and the hours upon hours that we had with the advanced warning there should not have been lives lost. property would have been destroyed certainly, but neither happened. we are thanful for that. but i must say that we are still in the active tsunami threat and there are still areas that have not received the initial wave. here we are 24 hours almost after the epicenter of the 8.8, and we are still talking about the active areas here. in japan, they will be receiving the first wave at 5:09, and that
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is minutes away. as you see the orientation of japan, we go from the northeast to southwest. you would expect the waves to take a bit longer as you get into the region here. okinawa is the last to see it. in fact, natalie, this is the last area, and this is the last forecast point that we have as far as the initial wave at 6:10 gmt, so okay gnaw inawa is goin the last place to receive the waves. it can be a series of waves that can be separated by five minutes or separated by as much as an hour. i am giving you the forecast of that initial surge. sometimes, in fact, that first wave is not the strongest as we saw with the abanda achi in
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india. let's look at the perspective here and talk about how long it takes. the reason we are able to forecast this. it is not rocket science here, and we are talking about the waves traveling at 800 kilometers an hour which is 500 miles per hour. essentially 747 is the speed you go when you travel across the planet here on a jetliner. so we talk about three, six, nine, 12 hour, and 15 hours here and then get into the certainly hawaii and then we continue in fact to 18, 21, and the furthest away you are from the epicenter the higher the chance of heeding warnings here. i see it as the first hour. if you are within say 500 miles or 800 kilometers of that epicenter, you are going to be in trouble, because the likelihood of you getting advanced notice is very low. as you get further and further away, the advanced warning becomes, of course, more available, especially talking
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about daylight hours. and the other thing that happens, natalie, not only advanced warning, but as the waves continue to propagate, you see what is happening. these are not estimate, but actually what happened. the height waves continued to decrease, so that the effects are lowered across the region. so by the time it gets to okinawa, we should be talking about the amplitude not being as significant, but my goodness, we will continue to watch it and keep you posted throughout the day. >> thank you, ivan. we have kyung lah for us in japan to let us know what happens there, so we will stay on top of it. thanks. see you in a little bit. by all accounts, chile was ready for a disaster like this saturday, but even so president obama says he is ready to commit help. and we will tell you what people are twittering in the wake of the earthquake. th intuit websit. just choose a style, then customize, publish and get foun sweet.
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what i am seeing in santiago
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is really nothing compared to what i am seeing in the local tv stations covering concepcion, and the streets are destroyed and the air is literally opened up, like the 2012 movie, the same thing. buildings, entire buildings collapsed. it's really a nightmare. the best sci-fi picture, the best sci-fi movie wouldn't describe it better. i mean, if you saw it, saw "2012" almost. that is concepcion, and it is really everything is falling apart. >> a descripps there of the damage in concepcion, the city closest to the epicenter of saturday's earthquake and we kept asking about the city as the story unfolded almost 24 hours ago. there is the story that we predicted. here is the latest from chile and teams rescued 30 people from one collapsed building in that
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central coast city. the government confirms more than 300 people died in the quake. still, that number could rise with emergency management officials indicating 500,000 homes were severely damaged in that city. chile is well prepared for this kind of disaster and not asked for international assistance, and still u.s. president barack obama was briefed on the quake situation by his top advisers and at an afternoon conference, president obama promised support if chile wants it. >> earlier today, a devastating earthquake struck the city of chile affecting millions of people. this catastrophic event was followed by multiple aftershocks, and has prompted tsunami warnings across the pacific ocean. earlier today, i was briefed by my national security team on the steps we are taking to protect our own people, and to stand with our chilean friends. early indications are that hundreds of lives have been lost in chile and that the damage is
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severe. on behalf of the american people, michelle and i send ourt deepest condolences to the chilean people. >> meanwhile, u.s. secretary of state hillary clinton said she will proceed with her planned trip to five latin america countries, including chile. ecuador's president says his country is poor, but also stands ready to help if needed. >> translator: an immense hug for the chilean people, for our dear friend michelle bachelet, an extraordinary woman. all of our support to them, and we are willing to give anything to them unconditionally. we are poor, but we have a great heart. we have solidarity. our chilean brothers know that they can count on us for whatever they need. >> eight groups are mobilizing supplies for chile and emergency funding is flowing to the area. so far the eu has offered more than $4 million to help chile recover. world vision is sending supplies including tarps, blankets and
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collapsible water containers. meantime, members from the aid organizations doctors without borders are on the way to the disaster zone, and the aid organization oxfam says it is sending a team of water engineers and logistics experts and humanitarian staff. a lot of people responding. former american emergency management official says that chile is in a better situation to handle the emergency than other countries. we were told that the type of building you are in could mean the difference between life and death. >> some of what they are dealing with now, and you have to look at chile is a very well prepared country when it comes to disaster preparedness compared to other countries perhaps. they have the urgency and the need, and now the priorities are determining what the extent of damage is as well as simultaneously working to free trapped victims and to save lives. there, it is almost difficult not to compare it to some other
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recent earthquakes like haiti perhaps, but there are a lot of differences, but some of the things remain the same and throughout is following a major earthquake with lots of structural collapse. the largest number of rescues are what we call self-rescue and people able to get out on their own or their friends and family and neighbors who come to help them out that are lightly trapped. the difficulty comes in when you have high or mid-rise buildings collapsed or perhaps partially collapsed where there may be voids, and it is difficult to get people out. i think that some of what you have seen here are some of the buildings collapsed and there was mention of some of the older churches where you have unreinforced concrete which basically turns to rubble. the chances of finding someone alive in there are minimal. >> well, the earthquake has put chile in the spotlight. to understand better how the
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disaster is affecting the country, our reggie akey has put together a quick profile. >> reporter: beyond the earthquake we wanted to share more into mace about the country of chile. it is home to 17 million people and they are by and large living in urban areas, 85% of them in cities otr surrounding communities and almost half live around the capital of santiago. another interesting fact, as you know, it is recognizable for the ribbon-like look on the map. it is nearly twice the size of california. that country is known as one of latin america's most stable democracies and strongest economies. in fact, it is the world's number one producer of copper. the history of the country goes all of the way back to 1810, and that is when the country declared its independence from spain. of course, you will remember from the history books that general augusto pinochet was the dictator who seized power in a military coup in 1973 and ruled chile all of the way up to 1990. fast forward to now when
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michelle bachelet is currently chile's president, and she the country's first female leader and took office in 2006, but that term is quickly coming to a close. in fact n a couple of weeks the president-elect sebastian pinera is due to be sworn in, and of course, with this disaster, he will have his hands full. one other thing about chile, they contributed to the recent efforts for the relief that went on in haiti, and in fact, the chilean government sent a 61-member rescue team to port-au-prince following their january earthquake. also, emergency relief items and two planes carrying medical assistance went from chile to haiti, and chile also has about 500 troops in haiti as part of the ongoing u.n. peacekeeping mission. i'm reggie with a few more facts about chile. back to you. >> thank you. survivors of the earthquakes have been getting their words and pictures out online. we will talk about how social media, i-report, and other media
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are helping friends and family stay connected. ♪ well, look who's here. it's ellen. hey, mayor white. how you doing? great. come on in. would you like to see our new police department? yeah, all right. this way. and here it is. completely networked. so, anything happening, suz? she's all good. oh, my gosh. is that my car? [ whirring ] [ female announcer ] the new community. see it. live it. share it. on the human network. cisco.
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social media are playing a major role in the aftermath of the earthquake. people around chile are seusingt to send messages and find friends and family. >> reporter: if you look at google.com right now, they have added a link below the search box reading 8.8 magnitude quake in chile, learn more. similar to the efforts in haiti, they are showing information for donations and those looking for missing relatives. so far more than 2200 submissions have been sent. here you are seeing an interactive map on which they have plotted the locations of the first quake incident and subsequent aftershocks. there is another group taking part in crisis mapping, and they are called ushahiti and they were critical in the aftermath
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of the earthquake in haiti, and now we are finding out how they are similar. >> we are going to be mapping for the chile platform basically using the same categories and indicators for haiti. these categories and indicators basically include emergency, collapsed structures, aftershocks, medical emergencies, issues having to do with vital lines like power outages, blocked roads as well as issues having to do with response, food distribution as well as water distribution. >> reporter: viewers also reaching out to us, and specifically me on twitter and facebook and sharing experiences. nicolas castro is in santiago, and he tells me on my facebook page, yes, the city is paralyzed, but unlike haiti, he says that his country is well prepared. also, i-reports continue to come in from chile's capital, and this one, the neighbor's newly
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constructed home reduced to rumbles. and also this mobile phone video, and this man was walking through his devastated apartment hours after the quake struck as the sun came up. you can see the place is structurally standing, but damage is apparent throughout. debris is everywhere and cracks in the walls as well. >> people have a lot of work to do. if you have any photos or video or if you want to share your eyewitness account with us, please do to cnn ireport.com. we have versions in english and spanish and we have a looking for loved one page where you can leave messages for your friends and family. chile will have their hands full in the coming days and weather can have a big impact on that. they were fortunate today, when they were outside where it seemed to be a beautiful day,
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ivan. >> yes, indeed a beautiful day in the southern hemisphere and talking about summer there. but that is the threat as well when you have 250,000 people in one of the towns, and then on top of that, because the weather is gorgeous this time of year, you get a lot of folks going down. we had the music festival down there and a lot of people could have been impacted there and have been with this incredible earthquake. we call them a great earthquake when they get to this magnitude, natalie. 8.8. to give you perspective, the haiti earthquake was 7.0 and this is now in magnitude of 32 times greater. and so you can talk about 800 times stronger, and the fifth most powerful quake since 1900 and because of the kind of quake, and i will get into that later, it triggered a tsunami, but for now, i want to focus in on what we are talking about as far as the earthquakes. not only is the tsunami threat continuing to be active, but the earthquake continues to be active, and we continue to have earthquakes, and we call them
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aftershocks, after the initial big one at 8.8, but they are still significant. the greater earthquake, and the communities can be completely destroyed, be the aftershocks are ranging from 5.0 to 5.9 and we had some a few minutes ago. what can that do? well, minor damage, if that is the initial quake, but if it comes in as an aftershock, after the big earthquake, infrastructure that is is compromised can topple. we can get these for hours and days and weeks on end. haiti continued to get them for weeks and weeks, and they were significant. now, this is the epicenter, and look at how close this is now to the coast of chile. just a few kilometers, a couple of miles here. that was the epicenter. the other dots that you see here are the aftershocks. as far as the shaking and how many people felt it. over 5 million, over 5 million now, almost 5.5 million felt
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severe shaking. 8 million felt strong to very strong shaking across this region. as far as the aftershocks, i am just poring through the numbers and i have to keep refreshing them, because they are coming in. we had another one just a few minutes ago at 5.3, and according to my estimation, that is putting us at 84 now. we have had 84 aftershocks in just less than 24 hours. natalie, you were talking about the forecast here, and we are going to be talking about sunshine over the next several days. i am not concerned about the weather for the recovery effort, because we will be clear. when i see you in a few minutes, we will talk about the plate tectonics here, and how they affect the tsunami. >> well, they need good weather and need good news now. they have been through enough. thank you, ivan. we are continuing the coverage of the aftermath of the earthquake. businesses damaged and families homeless. we will hear from the chile's
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ambassador to the u.n., and tell you about more aid on the way. so i was the guy who was never going to have the heart attack. i watched what i ate. i worked out. personally, i thought i was invincible. once it happened, i realized it's a different story. i'm on an aspirin regimen now because i never want to feel that helplessness again. [ male announcer ] aspirin is not appropriate for everyone. so be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. i was the guy who was doing everything right. i was wrong. talk to your doctor, and take care of what you have to take care of. [ male announcer ] learn more about protecting your heart at iamproheart.com.
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welcome back. i'm natalie allen and these are the headlines this hour. injured victims from the earthquake now have more places to look for help. the ministry says that hospitals are up and running in the most critically affected areas. meantime, the government now confirms more than 300 people died in saturday's quake. on land and at sea, the damage is extensive. you can tell from this video. authorities say that more than 1 million buildings were damaged across chile and bridges and
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highways and overpasses were toppled, roads buckled, cars strewn on highways like toys and boats, as you can see, battered and destroyed. well, after sweeping past hawaii, largely unnoticed, the tsunami generated by the chile earthquake is racing for japan right now. officials there warn of a possible three-meter high tsunami along the country's east coast. hundreds of thousands of residents have been ordered to higher ground. the tsunami swemt through the pacific, but caused little damage and all warnings except for japan have now been canceled. so we continue our coverage of a violent earthquake in chile and more than 70 aftershocks, as ivan mentioned a moment ago, have struck the area. a staggering 2 million people have been affected. cnn's don lemon has this recap of the disaster. >> reporter: it hit in the middle of the night, 3:30 a.m. in the night.
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a massive 8.8 earthquake in chile shaking the ground with little force. >> there was a violence shaking in santiago, and no question about it. i literally was knocked out of bed and on to the floor. it was pretty clear, because of the length of the earthquake that it was going to be a major earthquake. >> reporter: the force 800 to 900 times stronger than earthquake that devastated haiti in january. >> and it kept going up and up and up, and everything was moving. i actually thought that the ground was going to swallow the entire car. >> reporter: the damage on land is only part of the problem. the rumbling sent pulses across the pacific, triggering tsunami warnings in dozens of countries from russia to indonesia and japan and australia and in the u.s., hawaii. >> there were many, many waves and what will happen is the
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civil defense will give when we think that the amplitudes have decreased, the civil defense will give an all-clear, that it is safe to come back, but i would stay away until the civil defense gives the all-clear. >> reporter: chilean president taking to the airwaves declaring areas of catastrophe and urging people to stay calm. >> translator: sometimes people stay in homes that are of high risk to try to protect their property. i would like to make a call of the higher morale conscious, and basic moral conscious, because when we have a catastrophe of this nature, we are all involved. >> reporter: now the death toll climbs from the rumbling earth. don lemon, cnn, atlanta. the chilean ambassador to the u.s. says his country is well prepared for this type of emergency. he says that the private and public sectors are mobilizing to assess the damage, and provide assistance where needed. >> the government is right now
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in knowledge of this situation for receiving support if we need. normally, the country is very well prepared for this kind of emergencies, and not only santiago, but all over the country. but what i can tell you is that if we need some support specific support, we are going communicate that to the all of the governments that have already contacted us in this direction, but i would like to add, too, that not only the government, but even private organization, private people even has contacted, have contacted the embassy in order to offer different kinds of supports. >> chile has not asked for international aid, but humanitarian organizations are mobilizing to help victims of the quake. the salvation army will send food, water, first aid kits and
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other supplies to chile. world vision is sending tarps, blankets and water containers with the help of bolivia, and the united nations is standing by to provide immediate assistance, and amare cares is sending rapid response teams along with medical supplies. rescue crews are working on the ground to try to get help to the quake survivors. our johnathan mann spoke earlier with the red cross. >> we are obviously seeing the same images coming out on the news, and it will be a while to see the full extent of the damage. with eno it has happened impacting the capital as well as rural areas, so we are waiting to see a bit more. i know that the chilean red cross right now is working with the government for flyover assessments to get an idea of the damage, and we will get that information in the next hour or so, so we will be able to mobilize our resources in addition to that. >> now, there is one unfortunate parallel with the haitian earthquake and that is that the airport has been struck and closed.
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how much of a problem does that represent in the crucial first hours after such a terrible disaster? >> again, it is a bit early, as we know. the airport is obviously a main pipeline for getting people and goods into a country, so it can have a significant impact, but it is a bit early to see what the significant damage is, and if there are alternatives. we have a coastline and other ports that can be used as well. obviously, a concern, but there may be other options outside of the main import. >> and chile has assets and well functioning country and government, and how much easier is the work going to be because of that? are there any positive aspects to what is ahead? >> right. well, you know, as we say disaster is a disaster, because of the it exceeds your ability to respond to it. it really depends at this point the capacity of the chilean government and the regional resources to respond. so, that is a really something we have to keep in mind. the same event in can chile may
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look different if it happened in the united states or different if it happened somewhere hels the caribbean, so it is a bit too early to tell the need of the scale of the impact, and the assistance required globally, but we are definitely ready to assist and we have released $50,000 in support of the chilean red cross. we are standing ready to assist, but we have to see what the actual need is going to be outside of what chile can do itself. >> let me ask you the question, the immediate needs, the most immediate, and the most immediate emergency needs are medical needs. are we talking crush injuries or what is first thing typically the red cross has to do in a place like this at a time like this? >> well, the earthquakes have blunt trauma injuries and physical injurinjuries. search and rescue is one of the first needs and taken up by the government and the chilean red cross if it has the capacity. so search and rescue and traumatic injury support are the
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first needs in a situation like this. >> that was johnathan mann earlier, and at last report, the santiago airport is still closed there in chile. chile contributed to recent relief efforts in haiti. the chilean government sent a 61-member rescue team to port-au-prince following the january quake there. also, emergency relief materials and two planes carrying medical assistance. chile also has some 500 troops in haiti as part of the u.n. peacekeeping mission. you can help with the relief effort in chile. head to our special website impact your world, and we have compiled a list of responsible aid organizations helping in the region. well, what exactly triggers an earthquake like this and what determines just how damaging and deadly they can be? ivanka brar ra ivan has more on that. well, we have three types of earthquakes, natalie. i will get into the ones here we are talking about.
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what we had in haiti was the strike slip. you have plates across the planet, and they are constantly moving, but the way they are moving is important. because of the way that the plates that we are talking about here the plate here and the south american plate, converge, and this plate, the nazca plate is subverting underneath the next plate which is how you get the andes mountains and the volcanoes as well. we are talking about a convergent plate, and why is that important? it will cause the earthquake just like haiti, but in haiti we had lateral movement and strike slip quake. but not the case here. this is convergent. and we have the south america plate, and this is the nazca plate here. in a matter of years you build up pressure and the plate here,
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the south american plate bulges in, and continues to basically acquire pressure over years, and when you have essentially a rupture because of all of the energy that has been garnished and once you get the rupture, you will get a displacement up. if you have air on top of that, it would not be a problem, but we have water on top of it. what happens is that the water is displaced up and we will get a tsunami. if you are in a fishing boat in the middle of the pacific ocean, you won't feel it at all. it is only important as far as the shelf, and the continental shelf here. once we reach the shallow waters, because that is when the wave which is benign across the middle of the ocean becomes larger and larger and larger and essentially, you can see what is happening here. we are squeezing that in, and the water has to go up, and there is the tsunami coming in and creating havoc. of course, the height of it is certainly dependent upon how much destruction you can get. but that is why we can't forecast how large the waves are
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going to be, because all of the chevelles, a shelves and coastlines are different each one and depending on the orientation of how it is pointing to the waves could have a different bang to it. let's go to another source here, because i want to talk about the difference here, and this is what we didn't have across the indian ocean with 2004 earthquake. this is the measurement here that records the pressure that is on top of it because of the water. when you get an earthquake, that will send a signal to the buoy at the surface here. the buoy detects any change in sea level here. that is transmitted to a satellite which is then transmitted back to the tsunami warning center so we can give folks ample time to get ready. if you are talking within the hour, and within 500 kilometers or 800 kilometers and 500 miles of the epicenter, you won't get much warning. it is total devastation, and we
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just can't get the word out quick enough. but the further away you are, natalie, the more information, of course, we can put out there, and that is exactly what we have been doing here. we are a few minutes away now from secondary wave or the initial wave i should say approaching okinawa, and we will keep you posted on that, but that is the last forecast period there at 6:10 gmt and that is the last forecast period of that initial wave. but as you know, we can have a series of them, so we will keep you posted as far as the data coming in. i will let you know. >> all right. ivan, we will see you soon. desperate for news of loved ones. we will look at one american family's search for a relative in chile's earthquake zone. [ male announcer ] when you buy a car,
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aftershocks are still rattling chile and frit inning those who lived through the quake. eyewitnesses described the terror. >> it was the most terrifying experience, because it started and it kept going, increasing and the intensity kept going up and up and up. everything was moving. we -- i actually thought that the ground was going to swallow the entire car. and, you know, it was shaking, i mean, it shook the car like nothing. people started to come out on to the streets and then we also saw some type of lighting in the sky. i think it is because it was shutting down the electricity. fortunately, we did not see any buildings suffering any kind of damage on the exterior, however, many people got hurt inside, because things fell on them, or
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they got caught with glasses that were broken when they were running out of the building. this is a very high density area, and there are many apartment buildings everywhere. people were in the streets with their kids, their families. and you know, it just felt that it was never going to end. >> one person's account of what she went through. the earthquake has affected phone service, as you can imagine in some areas of chile frustrating families desperate to get in touch with loved ones. susan candiotti talked with one new york family who spent the day trying to track down their mother in santiago. she talked about it with cnn's don lemon. >> don, today, we spent some time with the rojas family, and they own a small grocery store in west new york, new jersey, which is across the hudson river from new york city. all day long, every ten minutes, they have been trying to reach iris rojas, and she is their mom
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and she has been living for three months at their family home in santiago, and they have not been able to contact her. they have been frantic throughout the day. >> we don't want to think nothing happened to like our mom, and we are still hoping the best that at any moment she will communicate with us. >> reporter: exactly. if only you could talk to someone else who lives nearby. >> yes. >> reporter: or to see -- >> we will try. we will try some neighbors, friends that we have in common over there in chile. people have tried to call, but it seems like there is no communication, communication is broken down in santiago, and we don't know what time they are going to establish the communications or -- we really don't know what is going on. it is hard to say when you call every five minutes, and you don't get an answer. >> you know -- >> translator: the truth is she is very strong. i hope that nothing terrible has
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happened. i have faith in god that nothing terrible has happened, and that i can communicate with her as soon as possible. >> well, good news. after trying all day long, finally, they got in contact with iris. it turns out that that there is damage to the family home. she left there and ran to look everywhere she could to find someone who had power so that she could use their telephone that was working, and she was able to call home, and tell them that she is okay. so, good news there as we said. a similar story involving the chilean ambassador to the united nations. his name is eraldo nunez, and he has a relative there in santiago and after several hours he reached them and found out they were okay. all day long, he has been watching the images on the chilean television and said it is very very difficult not to be there, himself. >> well, i like to be there.
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to help, to be with my family to, be with my friends. so my first reaction is here i am in new york city, thousands of miles away. i wish i was there instead of here. that is my first reaction. and to be able to participate in the help. >> reporter: so far the ambassador says that chile has not asked for aid from the united states, though offers of help have been made by the united states and through the united nations for example. he says it is early of course, and there may be more casualties found under the rubble, but for now, he said they are experienced in handling previous earthquake and they even sent a rescue team to haiti to help there. so he said there is a long road of reconstruction ahead of them and a tough road ahead as well, but he is confident that they will get through it. don, back to you. >> that was susan candiotti
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talking with don lemon. she had one family story, and you can imagine the number of people making sure that their relatives and phrenes are safe. we just want to remind you, that you can go to cnn.com and our i-report section does have a looking for loved ones page. we try to help connect people who are trying to still touch base with their friends to make sure they are okay, and their family. we certainly hope they are. hawaii dodges a bullet. we will have a first-hand account reacting to the tsunami warning issued after chile's earthquake, and that is ahead. if you have overactive bladder
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the sound of sirens in hawaii on saturday, not what people are used to or want to hear. a warning that a dangerous tsunami could be on the way after that massive 8.8 earthquake in chile, but thankfully, nothing happened. so far, the pacific-wide warning has turned out to be a
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precautionary measure. hawaii was spared, and that left people there breathing a sigh of relief as you can imagine. cnn correspondent thelma gutierrez was holidaying with her family in hawaii. earlier she described local reaction to larry king about the warning. >> this morning about 6:00 the sirens went off in town right above us, but then sirens started to go off right here at the hilton hotel. and suddenly people were pounding on the doors the make sure that the guests were up and out. that is exactly what we did. larry, all of the sudden, you know, i got a phone call from the hotel saying you have to go, because there is a tsunami warning now. so i had to gather my family and kids and whatever we could take, and quickly get out of the door. they took us to this evacuation center, and there is maybe 1,000 guests who were at that center. in addition to that, 500 employees. this is one resort, larry.
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we watched from big screens as this thing played out, and thankfully nothing happened. i think that the as well as that they saw here from the hotel rooftop were probably no more than half a foot. so, people here very relieved tonight. >> cnn correspondent thelma gutierrez, and she thought she was on vacation in hawaii and suddenly on larry king working. we appreciate her efforts, and now we hope she has a good time in hawaii. they survived their tsunami warnings, but japan is not sure yet if they will have the same luck. we are kind of waiting the find out. ivan cabrerra joins us again, and i guess you said a short while ago, it is starting to move through japan at this moment. >> yes, indeed. it continues to do that. as you hear the sirens for those of us in the united states who are familiar with the tornado warnings that we get, and you get that in the plains of the united states, you hear a tornado siren, you have minutes to head for cover, and when we
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are talking about a tsunami warning here, when you get the sirens, hawaii had five hours to prepare and not only do you miss certainly any fatalities with that getting everyone away from the coast, but you have enough time to get the boats out of the way. so significant amount of warning there with those sirens which is why we are continuing to better the system here and giving folks a head's up. now, let's get to the latest threat. it is continuing here. the wave continues to propagate as we speak. it is arriving in shimizu, japan. estimated 5:57 gmt, this is not exact, but an approximation knowing how the waves are traveling with speed. thereafter, next and last is okinawa, japan, 6:10 gmt, again, and that is the initial wave. i am not saying that the threat passes after these times and in fact, you can still get additional waves. a tsunami is a series of waves and not just one.
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the secondary or the one after that could be even greater. so, the threat continues for a good hour after the initial wave. so right around 7:10 gmt, we can start to breathe a sigh of relief or start reporting what is happening there. we will go back to the other source and get into how long it takes for the waves to get here. my goodness, natalie and i were here this time yesterday and we were talking about the initial quake and now we are talking about 20-some hours later and almost a full day later, and the wave continues to propagate here. one thing does happen. the intensity of it, the amplitude begins to lower, so you are not going to get the devastation that you will get near the epicenter along the coast. so with each successive hour here as we get into japan, and get into the philippines and as we get up into russia even, the waves that arrive there in the form of a tsunami should be less significant. that is based on how we know
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they travel as far as the speed. this is rocket science here. this is the height of the waves and this is computer modeling now from noaa. this is the epicenter off of the coast of chile, and you can appreciate that this is over open water, i may say, and this is where you get the worst of it, the higher amplitude waves. agains you cannot extrapolate what is happening in the ocean along the shores. you can have a two-foot wave here and end up with a 20-foot wave depending upon the irregularity of the shorelines and the orientation of how that wave hits. that is why we can't say, okay, well, we know that one buoy is talking about a two-foot wave, so that by the time it arrives in japan, that is what you are going to get. well, not the case. that is why we can't say precisely how these vary. case in point, here we go, 2.34 meter in talcahuantalcahuano, c
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we will keep you posted, natalie on the tsunami, and i have recorded a couple after-shakes here in chile, so both situations are active and we will bring you the latest. >> it is amazing that 24 hours ago almost you were handed bulletins that showed all of the countries that could be impacted by the tsunami, and so far, so good as far as that wave heading out across the pacific. >> yes. >> all right. ivan, thank you very much. i'm natalie allen, thank you for being with us. stay with us, because our special coverage of the earthquake in chile continues with the live update in japan where they are watching for tsunamis triggered by the quake. that is coming up.
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